Cherry Tree Fireball

RobieHousebfLOAnd we’re back…

It was a perfect day to explore Robie House and environs in Hyde Park – as you can mebbe guess from this image – but now we’re back home and closing out the long, holiday weekend.

With a cocktail.

And, since it’s a holiday weekend, let’s have a cocktail that takes just a wee, tiny bit of planning…

05cCherriesFireballbfLOFirst thing, you need to get you some of this Cinnamon Whisky stuff. It is quite Rich’s favorite since he discovered its wonders at a gathering in Rhode Island earlier this summer; and, while I am pretty much immune to its charms (tho’ it is tasty and wicked smooth), I am determined to use some in place of the cinnamon candies in 01cCherriesbfLOmy next attempt at candy apple chicken wings. I have a couple of ideas for that, and this time of year should be perfect for testing them out. Details to come.

Second (and mebbe third), you need you some cherries and some lemons. The recipe called for fresh, but I had two bags in my freezer from last summer, so figured I’d give them a try. Worked a treat.

So, cinnamon whisky and cherries (and lemons) secured, let’s make us a cocktail or five.

•2 oz Fireball Whisky
•1/4 cup fresh cherries
•4 oz cherry lemonade
•Cherries for garnish

Cherry Lemonade:
•1 recipe cherry simple syrup
•1 cup fresh lemon juice
•4 cups water

01bSimpleSyrupReadybfLOCherry Simple Syrup:
•1 cup water
•1/2 cup sugar
•2 dozen cherries, pitted and stems removed

First – and this recipe is comin’ atcha from a couple of different sources on the web, and in reverse order to the way I’ve listed the ingredients – we need to make the cherry simple syrup, which is simply stirring the water and sugar together in a small pot over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved and the liquid is crystal clear.

02cCherriesSyrupStrainerbfLOTransfer the liquid to your blender jar, add the pitted and stemmed cherries, and blend for 20 to 30 seconds.

Pour through a fine-meshed sieve set over a bowl or large pitcher and press the pulp with the back of a large spoon to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard any remaining solids…


04bCherryLemonadebfLOI was making a batch of cherry cola barbecue sauce, and sweetened cherry pulp seemed just the thing to add to the blend (it was) – so I saved the pulp for the sauce.

Roll your lemons while pressing down, then cut them lengthwise before juicing – it took 4-1/2 large lemons handled this way to give me one cup of strained lemon juice.

Stir the cherry syrup together with the lemon juice and four cups of water to make your cherry lemonade.

06bCherryFireballbfLONote: this is a nice lemonade, but not an overly sweet one. If your tastes run to something a bit sweeter, I would suggest adding the cherry simple syrup to this lemonade.

Cherry lemonade well and truly made, we can (finally) make our cocktail.

For each drink, muddle 1/4 cup of pitted and sliced cherries in 2 ounces of Fireball.

Strain into an ice-filled glass, add 1/4 cup of the cherry lemonade, and garnish with a cherry or three – Maraschino, I should think.

And once again, Happy Labor Day!

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